Warhol X Haring X Oswald Collab

“Untitled (Tie)”? image: sothebys

What was Andy Warhol painting red in 1984 that he cut the edge of off after stretching it, and then signed it?

Andy + I went to Sean Lennon’s birthday party in 1984 at Taverne on the Green. I think it was his ninth birthday. On the way there Andy gave me one of the “ties” he had brought to give to Sean. They were the discarded “trimmings” from the edges of his paintings. He called them “ties”, signed them, and gave several to Sean. 

is a thing Keith Haring wrote on Febuary 7, 1989, four and a half years later, on the back of the Warhol “tie,” that his buddy Kermit Oswald had already framed and signed himself in 1988?

” inscribed © Kermit Oswald 1983 Keith Haring on the reverse,” via: sothebys

Oswald was a childhood friend of Haring, and they stayed tight. He’s been head of the Keith Haring Foundation for decades. He ran a framing and fabrication shop after moving to New York with/to see his buddy. He talks of basically curating/producing/installing Haring’s shows. And he also jointly signed a lot of Haring’s work. It’s interesting to see his contribution to, say, these early painted cutout figures from Haring’s first show at Tony Shafrazi being explicitly circumscribed to “providing the wood.” As if the guy who picked up the plywood always signing things as “Copyright me” is just how things work.

Isn’t it more logical that the guy with the woodshop cut the figure, the guy with the marker drew his design, and then the guy with the woodshop routed it out and painted it in–and then signed his name first?

Anyway, point is, the Haring market seems to tell itself an awful lot of stories to make itself feel good. But the Warhol signed garbage given to Keith in a cab and turned into A Work by Kermit which Keith documented and signed later market seems to be doing just fine. At the Haring Estate stoop sale last week, this thing got a title and sold for 40x its estimate. I’m sure Sean is rummaging through his closet as I type.

Dear Keith, Works from the Personal Collection of Keith Haring: Lot 1056, Andy Warhol, Untitled (Tie), est. $5-7,000, sold for $201,600 [sothebys]